Jackson Co. Hopes to KO TIF in KCMO
All right, so the title of this post is a bit misleading — I just wanted to get as many acronyms and abbreviations in there as possible. Jackson County Executive Mike Sanders announced today that Jackson Co. will file suit against the make-up of the TIF Commission in Kansas City. Prime Buzz has the early scoop here.
This is a big issue, and you will see a lot more from the Show-Me Institute about it as it goes forward. Basically, I completely agree with the county on the larger issue of the KC TIF commission’s fairness. (Debating the details will have to wait a day or so until I have time to read everything carefully.) TIF commissions at the municipal level are a rigged game. The city gets to appoint so many members that the whole commission is clearly stacked. In St. Louis County, they are currently working with a modified TIF commission that gives the county more influence and the various cities less. It has not faced a real test yet, but I support the increased county role. I would support it for Jackson County, too, and I wish Co. Exec. Sanders and the county luck in this dispute.
I wrote about this issue in some detail nearly two years ago, in an op-ed arguing that all TIF decisions be made at the county level, and another piece commending St. Charles County for its resistance to the use of TIF. It looks like both of these pieces are very applicable to Kansas City and Jackson County right now. Nifty stuff.